The Rules

My favorite way to describe my faith is the way George Carlin does “I was Catholic until the age of reason.” LOL

I went to CCD as a child, First communion, all of it. Catholic from the beginning

I realized that Quaker was the only faith that described me at the end of senior year in high school

Eric Johnson, our Quakerism teacher, had us play a game on the last day of class.

He separated us equally, with no preference for gender, size, or anything else that I could see. Red Team, Blue Team. The tables were stacked by the wall, with just a small corral of desks in the middle of the room. Two corners held other corrals with balloons in them. Red for red team, blue for Blue Team.

After separating us to our team’s side, he gave us these instructions

“The game you will play has only one rule. Each team must get their balloons from the corners to the middle as quickly as they can.”

He freed us to run around, then. At first, we avoided each other, and placed balloons in the center with no conflict. Inevitably, someone stepped on a balloon, and everyone stopped for a second, unsure.

Then, a flurry of stomping, scratching, shoving until the floor was covered with the corpses of dozens of balloons.

“Have a seat (on the floor?!). Now think about the game and what behavior you exhibit when there are no rules.”

“Do you present the best side of your nature when no one is watching? Or do you need some rule to enforce morality on you?”

I still stop at stop signs, even in the middle of the night.

That memory is precious to me, and has defined me as much as anything else.

Quakerism Faith and Practices 

2 Responses to “The Rules”

  1. Nicola Says:

    Interesting one.

    I set myself my own rules to live by.

  2. veracity Says:

    Something to think about…

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